Robotic Process Automation [RPA], Test Automation – Myths and Facts

Is RPA a testing tool? Is Test Automation similar to RPA? Could Selenium be used for RPA? Does a Robot do RPA execution? How could RPA be utilized in testing? With RPA evolving could testers lose their job? Is RPA based on Agile?

To answer all such questions, we’ve come up with a post to debunk all myths and highlight the facts of RPA and test automation. Let’s get started with an introduction to RPA.

RPA Test Automation

 

What is RPA? What are its advantages and types?

RPA is a concept that can -

  • Automate the daily tedious manual testing that are repetitive, time-consuming and rules-based
  • Use software robots or Artificial Intelligence (AI)
  • Be applied across different industries

Leading to -

  • Quick improvements in the products’ efficiency
  • Enhanced accuracy
  • Cost reduction
  • Maintaining compliance

RPA could be categorized further as -

Simple RPA Cognitive RPA
Automation of any routine tasks where there is no need of intelligence is termed as Simple RPA. For example, Data Entry jobs Cognitive RPA involves human action/command for an RPA processing. For example, using Google assistant to find the shortest route while driving is a case of Cognitive RPA.

Myths of Robotic Process Automation

Myth One – RPA is similar to Test Automation

Conceptually, the two processes are similar as they both involve “automation,” and offer same advantages of reducing manual intervention and delivering quality. However, the System Under Automation [SUA] may differ concerning concept adopted. Let’s pick an example.

Say, a firm ABC has a product, Test Automation is applied only to the product and its features. However, RPA could be applied to other business processes like:

  • a data entry done in a bank  
  • for an HR department automating the onboarding process.

Other differences that are seen are that test automation works across different environments, i.e., QA, UAT, Prod, etc. whereas RPA runs only in the production environment. While Test Automation is limited to QA, RPA systems could be used by all individuals across the firm in terms of creation and usage.

Test Automation Robotic Process Automation
Applied to product Applied to products and other business processes
Need to be implemented across different environments viz QA, Prod, UAT Need to have only one production environment
Limited to a particular set of users Could be used by all individuals across the team

Myth Two – Testing with RPA is just like Test Automation

As we know RPA is a concept built on the foundation of “automation” but has reached to the next level where no/few coding skills are required. The RPA tool could automate anything with no dependency on the target system. So, at the roots RPA is same as a testing tool, but it comes with more flexibility and stability.

Myth Three – Testing Tools like Selenium Could be used for RPA

The market is flooded with test automation tools like Selenium, QTP, QFTest, etc. so could they be used as RPA tools? The short answer is NO, and long answer is – The test automation tools come with a constraint that they need a software product to work on. However, RPA could be applied to anything except a product. Hence, none of the testing tools available in the market could serve as RPA tools.

Myth Four – RPA may result in job losses

A report published by the McKinsey Global Institute says, “The right level of detail at which to analyze the potential impact of automation is that of individual activities rather than entire occupations…… Given currently demonstrated technologies, very few occupations—less than 5 percent—are candidates for full automation. However, almost every occupation has partial automation potential.”

This type of analysis builds hopes that the work done would be in collaboration of a human and a machine, so as of now we do not see RPA eating up jobs.

Five Facts of Robotic Process Automation[RPA]

Experts predict that Workforce automation is one of the technology disruptors, as per a report from CGI and other sources, few of the facts and figures on software robotics or RPA are –

  1. One could automate 47 % of tasks using RPA
  2. With RPA tools the processing time could be reduced by 40%
  3. RPA may boost the growth of IoT and Big data technology products and integration.
  4. RPA Tools would provide enhanced Analytics and Visualization models that are customer focused and beneficial for business.
  5. RPA is a strategic decision that needs to be implemented after assessing the ROI.

Robotic Process Automation @CloudQA

CloudQA in its journey to deliver quality and reduce cost is in the process of launching its RPA solutions soon. Our miniature robots could work across various industry like Banking, Insurance, Health or telecom. Our solution would help you in educating, implementing, supporting and maintaining the automation of business processes. CloudQA RPA tool would come with features like – Easy in setting up the environment, nonintrusive, scalable and above all automate simple and cognitive business processes.

Talk to us for more information on our RPA tools.

References
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